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Our Children Their Future.. It Is Time For Change

Kimberly Galeano 

Our Children Their Future.. It Is Time For Change 

Why are our public schools failing to provide an equal education to our children? Could socioeconomic factors be a cause of public schools failures? Researchers suggest there are several contributing factors to this critical issue. Families, school administrators, and political figures are working on creating changes to the failing public education system. Public schools are failing to academically educate our children.

What could be causing the public school system to be failing? In "Teaching Language In Open Admission", Adrienne Rich states that socioeconomic factors could be one of the causes for public school failure. "Often, however, this anger, if not driven in on ourselves, or converted to despair, can become an illuminating force: the term of the struggle for equal opportunity are chalked on the blackboard: this is what the students have been up against all their lives"(Rich 66). With little or no academic support in a public school setting, students are not guided in the proper direction. Several disadvantaged communities are not receiving equal educational opportunities. Although economically funded programs such as SEEK, have been created to help disadvantage students, many students are unaware of such programs or are simply not properly informed. Because several students come from different countries they struggle with dialect, and have little or no academic support. Privileged students, unlike disadvantage students, have more available resources in their schools. For example, if disadvantaged students are not properly communicated with, they will not become successful in their school setting.

What type of effect does the economy have on the public schools failing to provide students an equal education? In the news article ,Our Kids Suggests An American Dream Out Of Reach For Many, by author David H. Smith illustrates possible causes for how public schools are failing students. The news article quotes important facts from the book, Our Kids The American Dream In Crisis written by Robert D. Putnam. According to Putnam, "the gap between rich and poor" has had a profound impact on public schools failure and educational inequality. Putnam claims that a student's family income can determine what type of education a student will be exposed to. For example, students whose family have a high income "benefit from high quality schools, safe neighborhoods, and have helpful mentoring connections" (Putnam). Disadvantaged students who are born into low income families lack many of these types of helpful resources. Unlike privileged students, disadvantaged students face educational obstacles, such as inexperienced teachers and high-violent crime communities. Disadvantaged students who are from low-income families are more likely to drop out of school, because they do not have helpful educational resources.

Growing up in a low-income community, I've witnessed the effects unequal education can have on students lives. For example, young girls at my local high school were not properly educated on safe sex and became pregnant and never finished high school. Disadvantaged teens who struggle academically dropped out and joined gangs. I've experienced how low-income schools have failed to help one of my family members who suffered from a learning disability. My cousin, became a troubled teen, because school was too much of a struggle for him. At age sixteen he was served with papers from his guidance counselor to dropout. Feeling lost and confused without any academic support he did dropout of high school. Because I have witnessed the many types of negative affects unequal education can have on a student, it saddens me to learn it still continues today.

What type of strategies can be used to help improve the failing public education system? Researchers have stated there are several types of strategies, that can help improve the unequal education system. For example, the news article Teachers Rating Highlight Debate Over School Fixes; Low Ratings Show Difficulty In Turing Schools Around, by Leslie Brody suggest that stricter teachers evaluations can possible help improve the failing school system. In the article according to Andrew Cuomo, he believes that the solutions to fixing failing school's, is to provide the state more power. Providing local school districts with high economical funding, could help improve local public education. Proper school funding can provide better experienced teachers to help students learn. It also can provide access to better school resources.

What can the local community do to help their failing school systems? Its important for community members to join together in the effort to better their school system. The film Won't Back Down directed by Daniel Branz, focus on the lives of two mothers from different socioeconomic backgrounds, who are determined to change their failing education system. This film was inspired by true events. Its important that families unite to creat changes that can benefit the lives and futures of their children. Attending school bored meetings, and participating in school voting can help improve failing unequal public schools. Creating changes to unequal public education is possible.

There are several reason why our local public schools are unequal and failing. There are many contributing factors that result in unequal education. The lives of millions of children each year are impact by the type of education they receive. Its important for families, school administrators, and political figures to join together to creat the necessary changes that can help improve the american educational system.

Work Cited

Won't Back Down. Dir. Daniel Barnz. Perf. Maggie Gyllenhal, Viola Davis and Holly Hunter. 20th Century Fox, 2012. DVD

Brody, Leslie "Teachers Ratings Highlight Debate Over School Fixes; Low Ratings Show Difficulty In Turning Schools Around." Wall Street Journal (online) [NewYork, N.Y] Proquest. 27 Feb. 2015.

Logan, John Minca, Elisabeta and Adar Sinem. "The Geography of Inequality: Why Separate Means Unequal In American Public Schools." Sociology of Education 85.3 (2012) 287-301. Eric. Web 14 Apr. 2015.

Rich, Adrienne. "Teaching Language In Open Admissions". On Lies, Secrets and Silence W.W Norton and Company. New York. (1972) 52-68. Print.

Smith, David Hugh. "Our Kids' Suggests an American Dream Out Of Reach For Many." The Christian Science Monitor. Proquest. 12 Mar. 2015.


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